------------------------------------------------------------------- DAWN WIRE SERVICE ------------------------------------------------------------------- Week Ending : 10 April 1999 Issue : 05/15 -------------------------------------------------------------------
Contents | National News | Business & Economy | Editorials & Features | Sports
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CONTENTS ===================================================================
NATIONAL NEWS + Pakistan for stronger ties with China, says Nawaz + Qatar hopes Islamabad, Delhi will end disputes + Pakistan asked to sign CTBT, solve IPPs issue + Pakistan, Russia Nuclear talks conclude + World Bank to provide $400m aid to Punjab + Talks on power sale to India deadlocked + Group visa for Indian visits soon: envoy + Sindh to introduce new farm tax system + Govt starts issuing 100-page passports + Case based on surmises: Benazir's counsel + Draft law prepared to give legal cover to Khidmat bodies --------------------------------- BUSINESS & ECONOMY + Temporary reduction in SLR expected + New trade agreement with EC in May: Leon + Rs700m ST imposed on 18,000 units + Pakistan to achieve only 3% GDP growth + Govt to offload 30pc of its shares in oil & gas sector + Conditional raise in Wapda tariff notified + Jewellers with turnover below Rs4m exempted + Only 41% of ADP funds utilized in 9 months + Premiums on forward sale of $ fall sharply + Share index loses 13 points on heavy selling --------------------------------------- EDITORIALS & FEATURES + Wise counsel Ardeshir Cowasjee + Down the Khyber Irfan Husain ----------- SPORTS + Pakistan thrash India, lift trophy + Invincible Pakistan make India an easy prey + Pakistan thrash England by 90 runs in Champions Cup

Pakistan for stronger ties with China, says Nawaz

ISLAMABAD, April 9: Pakistan on Friday reaffirmed abiding 
friendship with its strongest ally China and said it looked forward 
to a "strategic partnership" for the 21st century.
"China has always stood by us," said Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, 
adding that its support had been invaluable in "critical times."
Visiting parliamentary chief Li Peng, in return, told Sharif that 
China saw friendship with Pakistan as a "permanent feature" of its 
foreign policy.
Sharif, speaking at a lunch for China's number two leader, also 
expressed strong support for Chinese efforts for the establishment 
of multi-polar world to ease tension, officials said.
A multi-polar world would contribute further to "relaxation in 
global tension and promotion of peace and development," he said.
Sharif also emphasized the need for "a new just and equitable 
international economic order and reform of the international 
financial system."
Sharif expressed gratitude to the Chinese leadership for its 
"understanding and sensitivity" over Pakistan's security concerns. 
He reiterated that its nuclear tests last May, in response to 
Indian detonations, restored the strategic balance in South Asia.
He underscored the urgent need for a just and final settlement of 
the Kashmir dispute between India and Pakistan on the basis of the 
UN resolutions calling for a plebiscite.
Li earlier held talks with Sharif lasting more than an hour. 
Officials said they covered economic, political and regional and 
international issues and matters relating to peace and regional 
At the talks Li expressed appreciation for Pakistan's support for 
Chinese positions on human rights, Tibet and Taiwan, officials 
He said relations would be taken to a new higher level and the two 
countries would develop a comprehensive partnership for cooperation 
in the 21st century.
Earlier the two countries signed an agreement under which China as 
a gesture of goodwill would provide grant aid to Pakistan, 
officials said. They gave no details.
Li, chairman of the National People's Congress, arrived on Thursday 
for a five-day visit that officials said forms part of high-level 
exchanges between Pakistan and China.
China has provided Pakistan with a 300 megawatt nuclear power plant 
and its collaboration has helped it make Super-7 fighter aircraft 
and tanks.
China has also expressed support for Islamabad's nuclear and 
missile programme but denied western reports of practical help.
China will take "all round cooperation to a new level," Li said in 
a speech at a dinner on Thursday hosted by National Assembly 
Speaker Elahi Bakhsh Soomro.-AFP

Qatar hopes Islamabad, Delhi will  end disputes

ISLAMABAD, April 6: Pakistan and Qatar on Tuesday agreed that 
establishment of peace and security in the region required non-use 
of force and peaceful settlement of disputes.

According to a joint communique issued at the end of two-day visit 
of Amir of Qatar Sheikh Hamad Bin Khalifa Al-Thani, Prime Minister 
Nawaz Sharif briefed the Amir in regard to the resumed Pakistan-
India dialogue and efforts made by Pakistan for the resolution of 
all outstanding issues between the two countries including the 
Jammu and Kashmir dispute.
The Amir while reiterating the well-known position of the 
government of Qatar on a peaceful settlement of the Jammu and 
Kashmir issue, welcomed the Lahore Declaration and expressed the 
hope for early realization of the commitments made by Pakistan and 
India towards settlement of all outstanding issues between the two 
The two sides also noted that progress and prosperity of the region 
required a stable and peaceful environment in South Asia.
Both sides reaffirmed their full support for earlier restoration of 
peace in Afghanistan on the basis of the preservation of its 
independence, sovereignty and territorial integrity.
The talks between the Amir and the prime minister encompassed 
matters relating to bilateral cooperation in various spheres and a 
review of the regional situation, with particular reference to 
South Asia and the Middle East, and the international developments 
at large.
While reviewing the bilateral relations, the Amir and the Prime 
Minister reiterated their resolve to intensify economic and 
technical cooperation commensurate with the level and quality of 
their political relations.
They agreed to reinforce the Joint Ministerial Commission as an 
umbrella for carrying forward the agenda for economic cooperation, 
especially to promote trade and investments.
The Amir briefed the prime minister on the progress made by Qatar 
in various spheres. The prime minister while lauding the all round 
progress, praised the Amir's enlightened leadership and the process 
set in motion by him to groom the Qatari institutions for greater 
service to the people, including the democratic process.
The Prime Minister while noting the upcoming role of the State of 
Qatar as the Chair of the next Islamic Summit, expressed the 
confidence that the Amir would successfully steer the agenda of the 
Ummah at the beginning of new century.
The two leaders while reviewing the Middle East situation, 
reiterated their shared view that path to peace in the region lies 
through faithful implementation of all agreements and in the 
Israeli withdrawal from all occupied Arab lands including Golan 
Heights, South Lebanon and the occupied Palestinian territory.
They also reaffirmed their support for the Palestinian right to 
establish the Palestinian State with Jerusalem as its capital.
While reviewing the situation in Kosovo, the two leaders expressed 
grave concern over the rapidly escalating atrocities and repression 
against the defenceless Kosovar Muslims by the Serbian forces and 
called upon international community to spare no efforts in stopping 
the systematic genocide and displacement of the Kosovars from their 
hearth and homes.
In this regard, they called upon the United Nations to play its due 
role to bring to an end the enormous humanitarian catastrophe 
created by Serb intransigence and brutalities. Both leaders agreed 
that the OIC, should initiate consultations to deal with the 
They expressed sympathy and solidarity with the people of Kosovo 
while underlining the importance of complying with the Rambouillet 
Peace Accord.
The Amir invited the prime minister to pay an official visit to 
Qatar which the latter accepted with pleasure.-APP

Pakistan asked to sign CTBT, solve IPPs issue
Ihtashamul Haque

ISLAMABAD, April 7: The Pakistan Development Forum envoys have 
urged the government to resolve the Independent Power Producers 
issue, and sign Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty before September this 
Informed sources told Dawn that the envoys, during a briefing by 
Finance Minister Ishaq Dar here on Wednesday about Pakistan's 
funding requirements during 1999-2000, said that the delay in the 
resolution of the IPPs issue was causing problems for attracting 
foreign investment in the country.
The meeting with the envoys will set the pace for having further 
negotiations with the PDF, previously known as aid-to-Pakistan 
consortium, in Paris on April 22 and 23 to seek $2.6 billion 
assistance including $2.2 billion from the Forum.
The envoys of the US, Japan, the Netherlands and Canada were of the 
view that the government should take into confidence the 
representatives of the IPPs to have an early solution of the 
Sources said that the finance minister informed the envoys that an 
independent committee, headed by Sikandar Khan of Millat Tractors, 
was trying to resolve the issue. Dar regretted that the delay in 
submitting the report by the committee, which was due in December 
last, had delayed the resolution of the issue.
However, he assured that the issue would soon be resolved.
In this regard the minister also referred to the restructuring of 
Wapda and said that the IPPs issue could not be resolved in 
isolation and that the authority's interest would have to be kept 
in mind.
Sources said that the envoys of the US, UK, Japan and Canada also 
raised the issue of early signing of CTBT by Pakistan. They assured 
of their all support in case Pakistan opted to not only adhere to 
CTBT but sign it ahead of India before September this year.
They said that Dar said Pakistan would not sign the treaty unless 
the atmosphere of coercion and pressure was removed. He said it 
would be good if the international community lifted the remaining 
sanctions so that Islamabad could take an early decision over the 
issue. When reminded by one of the PDF envoys that it was not a 
question of pressure and that the government should keep in mind 
the human aspect of the CTBT, Dar said that the government had 
already announced that it would not at all allow the export of 
nuclear technology to a third country and that the West should 
understand the practical difficulties of Pakistan in early signing 
of the treaty.
Dar also defended the initiation of yellow cab scheme and told the 
US envoy that it was started in the interest of the people. He 
contradicted reports that money spent on the scheme had eventually 
gone waste. He said a number of families were provided jobs through 
this scheme.
Responding to a question the minister said that the levy of 
agriculture tax was the responsibility of the provincial 
governments. He, however, assured that the government was trying to 
bring in the tax net all those who had a taxable income including 
the landlords.
Talking about the future economic scenario of the country, Dar said 
that the government had projected a GDP growth rate of 5.3 per cent 
for 1999-2000 against the expected 4.1 per cent of the current 
financial year. He said that the proposed 5.5 per cent agricultural 
growth rate would help achieve 5.3 per cent GDP growth in the next 
financial year.
He said that since the international financial institutions had 
expressed their confidence in the policies of the government, 
Pakistan would soon be in a position to remove its various 
problems. He said that the government had provided lot of 
incentives for foreign investment in all the major fields.

Pakistan, Russia Nuclear talks conclude

ISLAMABAD, April 9: Pakistan and Russia on Friday concluded their 
two-day talks on nuclear-related issues, including the 
Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty (CTBT), officials said.
The two sides exchanged views on the security situation as well as 
the nuclear non-proliferation and disarmament issues, they said.
The Russian side, led by GV Berdennkov, director of Russia's 
Disarmament and Security Department, held wide ranging talks at the 
foreign office and at the defence ministry.
"The discussion at the Foreign Office focussed on Pakistan's 
dialogue with the United States and India as well as our position 
on nuclear-related issues including the CTBT," sources said.
The Russian delegation gave a detailed briefing about Moscow's 
approach with regard to the Strategic Arms Reduction Talks (START) 
and the Anti-ballistic missile (ABM) treaty.
The Pakistani side, led by the additional secretary, Riaz Muhammad 
Khan, elaborated upon the efforts being made for stabilising the 
security situation with reference to nuclearization in South Asia. 
He, in this context, underlined the importance of resolving the 
core issue of Jammu and Kashmir.-APP

World Bank to provide $400m aid to Punjab

RAWALPINDI, April 7: The World Bank (WB) will provide financial 
assistance of $400 million to the Punjab government for the 
improvement of health facilities in the province.
This was disclosed by the Punjab health minister, Raja Ashfaq 
Sarwar, and Punjab's health secretary in a joint press conference, 
held at the Punjab House.
The minister said the WB would provide the huge amount to the 
province within a period of 12 years, and the provincial government 
had chalked out a comprehensive plan to rectify the present health 
system with a view to provide better medical facilities to the 
He said the provincial government had introduced a system of 
District Health Government (DHG) in the province and initially 10 
different districts would enjoy such status. Out of 10 districts, 
all four districts of Rawalpindi division would have a DHG, he 
He said to eradicate any sort of corruption and negligence, the 
provincial government was giving autonomous status to the 
government hospitals and this step had brought positive change in 
the performance of these hospitals.
He said the Holy Family Hospital (HFH) had been granted autonomous 
status while two other hospitals of Rawalpindi, including the 
Rawalpindi General Hospital and the District Headquarter Hospital, 
would be given autonomy shortly.
In the first phase, some four government hospitals were given 
autonomy which included HFH in Rawalpindi, the Lahore General 
Hospital, the Punjab Institute of Cardiology, the Rawalpindi 
Medical College and the Allama Iqbal Medical College.
Responding to a question, he said six new drug courts were being 
established at different divisions.

Talks on power sale to India deadlocked

NEW DELHI, April 6: Negotiations on a cross-border electricity deal 
between Pakistan and India are deadlocked over price, officials at 
India's central transmission utility, the Power Grid Corp, said on 

In February, Pakistan had agreed to supply 300 megawatts of 
electric power daily to India for the next 10 years, with tariff 
and other commercial terms to be decided by both countries.

"In the long run, we may have increased our demand to 1,000-
megawatts," said an official of Power Grid Corp.
"But we have not been able to settle on the tariff by mutual 
negotiations. At the moment things are deadlocked with Pakistan 
sticking to its high seller's price."
According to Indian power ministry officials, Pakistan was asking 
for seven US cents (just over three rupees) for one unit of power, 
while India's best offer was just three cents (Rs 1.30).
"Pakistan wants us to foot the bill for the fixed costs, but since 
it is not generating the power for India and giving us its surplus, 
it is fair that we pay only variable costs," said a Power Grid Corp 
India is facing an acute power shortage. It has a peak demand of 
around 68,000 megawatts and a generating capacity of 81,000 
megawatts. Some 60 percent of generation is wasted due to plant and 
transmission losses.
Power Grid Corp has been buying 65 megawatts of power daily from 
Bhutan at subsidized rates.-AFP

Group visa for Indian visits soon: envoy
Bureau Report

PESHAWAR April 4: Underlining the need of extension of bilateral 
relations between the two countries the high commissioner of India 
G. Parthasarti hinted on Sunday of introducing group visa system in 
next couple of months to further ease travelling of both citizens 
to see each others places of historical importance.
In an informal chat with newsmen on the occasion of the day-long 
visit of foreign envoys to the historical Khyber pass through 
Safari steam train, told a questioner that there was no restriction 
on travelling of journalists to his country. He however hastened to 
add that visit to Indian held Kashmir depends on circumstances 
prevalent in the valley.
Commenting on his visit to the historic Khyber pass, the Indian 
envoy described it fascinating, informative and fruitful, for, he 
had had a chance to see this place first time in his life.
Responding to a question, the Indian envoy told that his country 
had already recognised the tourist visa and a group visa system is 
being introduced under the same scheme of things. Under this 
scheme, he said those desirous of visiting in groups will be 
provided other facilities including visa.
In response to another question, he said the Indians were equally 
desirous of paying visit to Pakistan and they should be provided an 
opportunity to that end.

Sindh to introduce new farm tax system
Sabihuddin Ghausi

KARACHI, April 7: The Sindh government has expressed its inability 
to harmonize its agricultural related taxes collection system on 
the lines proposed by the federal government in 1998 and is instead 
going ahead in direction of enforcing a new system based on 
production index units.
The existing agricultural income tax system was introduced by the 
set-up that was thrown up by the February 1997 elections and is 
based on cultivated areas for which there are different rates for 
different crops and fruit orchards.
Under the proposed new system, farmers will be served with a demand 
notice from the Board of Revenue for a tax that will represent levy 
on their land holdings, land revenue, usher and all local cesses. 
Tax collectors are looking for a recovery of Rs 1.6 billion in case 
the government decides to enforce it from the next fiscal year in 
place of Agricultural Income Tax (Amendment) Ordinance 1997.
The farmers will pay these bills in the banks. The new system will 
eliminate the role of patwaris and district and tehsil level 
revenue collectors who under the present system make assessment of 
the crop and serve demand notices on farmers as well as collect tax 
from them.
For this purpose the agricultural land in the province has been 
divided into four distinct slabs or categories. The first slab of 
agricultural land will have a rate of Rs 8 per production index 
unit. This category comes under the area commanded by barrages and 
is considered the prime quality agricultural land in the province 
in terms of water availability, soil chemistry, productivity and 
other features.
According to tax collectors, this category is spread over 6 million 
acres in the province and will generate anywhere up to Rs 1 
The rate of tax on second category of land is Rs 5 per PIU and it 
is spread over 3.5 million acres. Farmers holding this category of 
land are expected to give a revenue of Rs 350 million in a year.
On the third slab, spread over about two million acres, the 
government plan to levy tax at the rate of Rs 3 per PIU and hope to 
recover Rs 130 million.
The fourth slab of agricultural land is obviously much less 
productive than the first three slabs is spread over 1.5 million 
acres on which the government is considering to enforce tax at the 
rate of one rupee per PIU and hope to recover Rs 30 million.
Then there are kutcha area, barani area and those enclaves of 
agricultural land which are fed by tubewells. The government assess 
the tubewell irrigated area slightly less than half a million acres 
and is proposing a tax of Rs 4 per PIU.
The same rate of Rs 4 per PIU has been proposed for the kutcha area 
which is the land that gets inundated during the floods but is 
available for wheat sowing after the water recedes and is 
considered to be most fertile. For the barani or rain fed area, the 
government is considering to recover tax at the rate of Rs 2 per 
Under the new system, there is no exemption from tax payment except 
when the crop is damaged by breach of canal, floods, fire or any 
Revenue experts term the new system of tax collection from farmers 
as a capacity tax rather than a tax on income. "This system spares 
farmers from disclosing their income from agricultural sources," a 
leading income tax practitioner said.
Syed Qamaruzzaman Shah, a leading spokesman of the farmers in Sindh 
and a former PPP Senator concedes that the new system is based on 
capacity collection rather than on the income. "But how can you 
expect farmers to maintain accounts and do book keeping when 
traders in urban areas are not doing so," he said.
Farmers leaders contend that till the time the country attains a 
universal literacy and all financial transactions are documented 
there is no way giving up revenue generation by way of capacity or 
on presumptive and from withholding. "Bulk of the so called income 
tax is obtained from presumptive and withholding regime," Syed 
Qamaruzzaman Shah said.
The 1998-99 budget document of Sindh projects recovery of Rs 600 
million agricultural income tax, Rs 130 million land revenue, Rs 
101.32 million cotton cess.
Tax officials indicate a collection of Rs 645 million collection so 
far in respect of all these taxes and hope to recover Rs 450 
million from rabi crops.

Govt starts issuing 100-page passports

ISLAMABAD, April 8: The government has started issuing 100-page 
passports simultaneously from Islamabad and its missions abroad, 
which would prove beneficial to the business community, sources in 
the Immigration Department told APP on Thursday.

The Acting Director General of Passports said the 100-page 
passports were being issued from Islamabad, Washington, London, 
Jeddah and Abu Dhabi.
He said the step had been taken to provide better travelling 
facilities to the people who frequently visit Pakistan and travel 
Narrating the procedure for issuing such passports, Mr Mukhtar 
Ahmed said that in the country these passports were being issued 
from Islamabad in the country at present and all applications being 
received from different parts of the country were sent to the main 

The DG said that the normal fees for the passport was Rs7500 and 
the people needing an urgent passport would have to deposit 
Rs15,000 as double fees.
After fulfilling the set procedure, he said, the passport was 
issued to the applicants and the same procedure was being adopted 
which was already in practice to avoid any extra fatigue.
Pakistanis living abroad applied for these passports at the 
missions there and after due process they were issued passports, he 
Mr Mukhtar said that at present due to lack of passport machines at 
Pakistani missions abroad, the facility had been provided only in 
Washington, London, Jeddah and Abu Dhabi and the network would be 
extended to other countries as well in near future after the 
machines were installed there.

He said the response of Pakistani nationals in the country and 
abroad was encouraging as they thought it a positive step which 
would help boost business activities.
He was of the view that issuance of the 100-page passport would 
also help frequent visitors and the business community to further 
expand their trade and business network.-APP

Case based on surmises: Benazir's counsel
Bureau Report

ISLAMABAD, April 9: Allegations of abetment against the opposition 
leader, Benazir Bhutto, for awarding the pre-shipment inspection 
contract to a Swiss company, SGS, are not supported by direct 
evidence and the case of the prosecution is based only on surmises 
and conjectures, Ms Bhutto's counsel argued on Friday.
The special public prosecutor (SPP), Ali Sabtain Fazli, concluded 
his submissions, at 10:30am on Friday, before the Ehtesab Bench in 
the ehtesab reference No 30. Asif Ali Zardari had asked the court 
to adjourn its proceedings as senior counsel Abdul Hafeez Pirzada 
was supposed to have opened the argument. The court did not accept 
the request. The court, comprising Justice Malik Qayyum and Justice 
Najmul Hasan Kazmi, rose for half an hour after directing the 
defence counsels to start their arguments at 11:00am.
As the proceedings resumed, Babar Awan started his arguments by 
saying that the prosecution's case was based on haphazard 
circumstantial evidence and not on direct evidence. He contended 
that it was established principle of law that if a case was based 
on circumstantial evidence, the chain of evidence should not break 
at any stage. "In this case (the) chain breaks at every stage and 
the benefit of doubt should go in favour of the accused," the 
counsel argued.
To the allegation, that Ms Bhutto misused her official position as 
prime minister by awarding the pre-shipment inspection contract to 
SGS, no illegality had been committed, the counsel argued further.
Regarding the allegation that illegal gratification was received by 
the former prime minister, the counsel said the prosecution had 
brought forward no evidence whatsoever. "The case is based on 
surmises, conjectures and inference is drawn that she being the 
prime minister obtained illegal gratification."
The defence counsel stated that the sitting prime minister (Nawaz 
Sharif) had admitted that his decision to freeze foreign currency 
accounts (FCA's) was wrong. The admission was witnessed by millions 
of people on television. The decision to freeze the FCAs have 
brought the stock markets down, and eaten up billions of rupees. 
"Why no case has been registered against the sitting prime 
minister," the counsel argued.
The defence counsel contended that Jens Schlegelmilch, an alleged 
front man of Asif Ali Zardari, had never come to Pakistan and the 
statement that he used to be the special guest of the former prime 
minister was wrong.
The counsel further stated that the government had made no effort 
to ensure the presence of the Jens Schlegelmilch for recording his 
statement. Both the investigative officers in the Ehtesab Reference 
No 30 had admitted in their statements that they never attempted to 
record the statement of the alleged front man.
The prosecution was in such haste that they even did not provide 
any opportunity to the accused for clearing their positions. Asif 
Zardari was never contacted for getting his version, the counsel 
The defence council said Benazir Bhutto was never interested in the 
pre-shipment inspection scheme and had attended only one meeting 
regarding it. The evidence of those officers, who had been 
suspended on corruption charges, was biased and could not be relied 
Referring to the evidence of Saqlain Shah, a police inspector 
posted at the gate of the prime minister secretariat at that time, 
the defence counsel said he (Mr Shah) had stated that someone by 
the name Mr Shaken came to see Asif Zardari. The prosecution was 
assuming Mr Shaken to be Jens Schlegelmilch.
Earlier, the special public prosecutor contended that proceedings 
conducted by the Swiss judge, Daniel Devud, were judicial 
proceedings. As under Swiss Law the investigation magistrate 
enjoyed judicial powers.
With regard to sending the commission to Switzerland for verifying 
the documents, the special prosecutor stated the commission was 
given only a ten-day period to visit Switzerland and submit its 
report. He said that he defence was informed about the commission 
on the very first day the court constituted it.

Draft law prepared to give legal cover to Khidmat bodies

ISLAMABAD, April 7: The government has prepared a draft law to 
provide legal cover to the khidmat committees, and empower them to 
investigate in cases of corrupt practices.

This was stated by Maj Gen (Retd) Sikander Hayat, chairman Prime 
Minister's monitoring and evaluation cell while talking to APP here 
on Wednesday.
He said, Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif had constituted a committee 
headed by parliamentary secretary Syed Zafar Ali Shah to suggest 
legal framework for strengthening the role of the khidmat 
The committee, he added has done its job and now the draft law is 
at the final stage, for seeking approval of the Federal Cabinet.
He said that after the approval from Cabinet "khidmat committees" 
ordinance would be promulgated by the President.
The proposed law, Sikander said would empower the khidmat 
committees to raid, investigate the matters of corruption, 
irregularities, causing loss to the national exchequer.
The khidmat committees would also be authorised to obtain and check 
the official records.
He said after the enactment of law, the actions and proceedings of 
the committees would not be challenged in the court of law.
Although the tenure of the committees would be expired on April 17, 
but they have been asked to work till the re- organisation of the 
committees, he added.
Sikander said that a proposal to provide financial support to 
khidmat committees is also under consideration.

He said that district administration has been asked to take 
immediate steps on the reports of khidmat committees.
To a question, he said that corrupt and non-interested members of 
the committees have been sacked on the complaints of the general 
He said that the sacked members were given a right of hearing on 
the complaint and the decision was taken after completing 
Sikander said that the government is satisfied with the performance 
of committees. 
The committees have provided relief to a large number of people, 
detected ghost schools and other cases of corruption and recovered 
huge amount, from the corrupt officials.
He said the Prime Minister has involved general public in the 
process of eliminating corruption at the gross root level.
The government, he said, was giving due consideration to the 
suggestions and the complaints received from these committees to 
achieve the desired results.-APP

Temporary reduction in SLR expected
Mohiuddin Aazim
KARACHI, April 9: The State Bank of Pakistan may cut statutory 
liquidity ratio (SLR) and cash reserve ratio (CRR) for a short 
period to trigger further cuts in lending rates if the government 
fails to reduce returns on national saving schemes substantially.
Top bankers told Dawn on Friday a 1-2 per cent cut in SLR/CRR could 
not be ruled out under the present scenario. The State Bank has 
already slashed its repo rates by 2.5 per cent to 14 per cent 
within last one month to prompt banks to cut their lending rates.
Four out of five major banks namely state-run National Bank and 
Habib Bank and partly-privatized Allied Bank and Muslim Commercial 
Bank have capped their lending rates between 18-19 per cent and 
United Bank is likely to follow suit shortly. But the government 
and the business community alike want banks to make further cuts in 
lending rates. The bankers want cut in national saving scheme rates 
to facilitate reduction in lending rates.
Finance Minister Ishaq Dar has indicated that returns on NSS might 
be lowered by 2 per cent but this has not been done so far.
"That is where the State Bank could play a role," said a top 
banker. "If the government delays reduction in return on NSS or it 
cuts the return very marginally the State Bank can slash SLR and 
CRR to help banks reduce their lending rates." Slashing of SLR and 
CRR currently at 15 and 5 per cent of total deposits of banks would 
mean creation of extra liquidity in banking system thereby 
facilitating banks to make further cuts in lending rates.
Senior bankers make no secret about the fact that banks would cut 
the rates of return on their deposit to make up for present or 
future cuts in lending rates. But they are in a fix over how to go 
about it unless the government reduces returns on NSS. "If we start 
rationalizing our deposit rates without waiting for the government 
to cut returns on NSS people would withdraw money from banks and 
invest in NSS instead," feared treasurer of a private bank.
Another factor worth considering for the banks before reducing 
deposit rates is the possible stability of exchange rates. "If 
exchange rates are not stable it would not be wiser on the part of 
banks to cut deposit rates drastically because that again might 
result in outflows from banking system," said treasurer from 
another bank.
Senior bankers say bank depositors currently get an average of 
around 12 per cent return on one-year term deposit and 9 per cent 
on saving accounts. 
They say banks need to cut these rates to 10 and 7 per cent 
respectively. But here lies the problem. Reducing return on one 
year deposits to 10 per cent would mean that the saver would be 
getting only 6.5 per cent after paying 2.5 per cent Zakat and 10 
per cent withholding tax whereas the government says inflation is 
at 7 per cent.
These bankers say average lending rate in Pakistan currently hovers 
around 16 per cent which the government wants to bring down to 14 
per cent. 
They say the task is hard but could be met if banks are able to cut 
their costs in addition to revising downwards the returns on 
deposits and the State Bank continues to support their efforts 
through such monetary measures as cut in repo rates and SLR and CRR 
New trade agreement with EC in May: Leon
Ihtashamul Haque

ISLAMABAD, April 9: Pakistan and the European Commission will have 
a new trade agreement in May, said the visiting vice president of 
the Commission, Sir Leon Brittan.
Speaking at a news conference here on Friday, he said that he has 
discussed a number of important issues with the top Pakistani 
authorities including the signing of the new agreement between the 
two sides. He said signing of Third Generation Agreement will be 
possible in May 1999 between Pakistan and the European Commission.
He said he had met the prime minister, the finance minister and 
State Bank Governor Dr Yaqub and discussed with them the deepening 
of trade relations between the two sides.
To a question, he said that the launching of the euro as a single 
European currency will greatly benefit the developing countries 
including Pakistan. "Pakistan has much to gain by having increased 
trade and economic relations with the European Union", he said.
Sir Leon Brittan has come to Pakistan after having visited 
Indonesia, Malaysia and India to secure support for a new 
multinational trade negotiations to be launched in ministerial 
conference being held in Seattle, United States from Nov 30 to Dec 
3 this year.
He was of the view that Millennium Round was necessary to stimulate 
trade and growth, reduce the risk of protectionism and strengthen 
the multilateral trade system.

Answering a question, he said that Pakistan will not lose any thing 
by further lowering tariffs. "Protectionist policies are not good 
for Pakistan and the EU", he believed.
He told a reporter that a new Millennium Round was necessary to 
remove trade barriers. He said time has come to further liberalize 
trade relations among the nations.
Sir Leon Brittan pointed out that a stronger Europe will mean a 
better market for Pakistan and other developing countries. "The 
launching of euro is a win win situation for every country", he 
Asked whether the EU was also pressuring Pakistan to sign the CTBT, 
he said Pakistan government was protecting the national interest 
without being pressured. "The government is doing its job over the 
issue of CTBT and I do not have to speculate about it", he added.
During his meeting with the finance minister, Dar told him that 
although full implementation of existing bilateral commitments was 
a concern for all WTO members, yet for most of the developing 
countries, it was an issue which influenced their attitude to 
further trade liberalization negotiations. "Like all other 
developing countries, Pakistan has also encountered with problems 
in implementation of Uruguay Round commitments. Where as Pakistan 
has positive vision of further trade negotiations, it is imperative 
that such efforts do not add to perceived or actual asymmetry in 
the balance of benefits between the developed and developing 
countries", the finance minister said.
Sir Leon Brittan appreciated the measures adopted by the government 
of Pakistan for the revival of the economy, which was affected by 
the South East Asian recession and economic crisis and the cut off 
economic relations with the Britton Woods institutions after the 
nuclear test. He considered the recent adjustments in the exchange 
rate mechanism and the reduction of tariff a good step in the right 
direction for trade liberalization.

Rs700m ST imposed on 18,000 units

ISLAMABAD, April 7: The Central Board of Revenue has imposed a Rs 
700 million sales tax for 1998-99 on 18,000 industrial units in 28 
sectors to be paid collectively by manufacturers by enrolling under 
a simplified procedure without any audit.
A CBR notification No SRO 458 (I)/99, dated April 6, 1998, says 
that the manufacturers who have been paying fixed ST during 1996-
98, would be paying ST for the same items, which are: nuts, bolts 
and screws; ceramic sanitary ware; brass water fittings; malamine 
crockery; PVC pipes, Aluminium utensils; press and offset printing; 
plastic goods; RCC pipes; wire netting; sweetened supari; plastic 
bags; corrugated and solid board; marble tiles; agarbatti; plastic 
dori and nawar feeta; brass sanitary fittings; sewing thread; 
desert coolers; electric and gas appliances; washing machines; 
metal containers; electric fans; paints and varnishes; embroidered 
goods; brick kilns; and sweets and bakers (confectioners).
The rules announced through this CBR notification for the retailers 
are as follows: The rules attached would be called Simplified Sales 
Tax Rules, 1999. These shall apply to manufacturers of goods 
specified in the schedule to these rules whose annual turnover is 
below Rs 1 million. These rules will not be applicable to those 
manufacturers who are already operating under the value-added tax 
These rules shall come into force at once and unless repealed 
earlier, shall remain in force during the financial year 1998-99.
The manufacturers shall pay 25 per cent additional amount for the 
first five months and 50 per cent additional amount for the 
remaining seven months of the financial year 1998-99 as compared 
with the amount paid by them during the financial year 1997-98.
These manufacturers shall file monthly sales tax return cum-
challans under the normal VAT mode. The manufacturers already 
operating under normal VAT system shall not be allowed to opt under 
these rules.
The manufacturers already availing any concession on remission of 
exemption of customs duty or sales tax on the import of raw 
materials under any notification opposing form 'S' and/or survey 
certificate from CBR shall not be allowed to opt under these rules.
The manufacturers shall not be entitled to issue tax invoices.
The manufacturers shall not be entitled to sell their goods to 
government departments and to institutions deduction advances 
Income Tax under Section SO (4) of the Income Tax Ordinance, 1979 
and other institutions which are legally bound to make their 
purchase from registered persons.
The Anjuman shall be responsible to enlist 9011 manufacturing units 
which were paying sales tax during the financial year 1997-98. The 
Anjuman and FAST in coordination with the department shall further 
enlist about 9000 unregistered manufacturing unit.
It shall be the responsibility of the Anjuman or FAST to ensure the 
enrolment of all these units (total about 18,000) with sales tax 
department and ensure timely payment of ST dues.
The estimated revenue from these units is approximately Rs 700 
million and the Anjuman and FAST shall be responsible for 
collection of the amount by June 30, 1999, in coordination with the 
The manufacturer failing to discharge its revenue obligations under 
this agreement shall be liable to proceedings under the Act for 
recovery of the principal tax, additional tax, penalty and, as the 
case may be, including prosecution under the relevant laws. In case 
of failure the department may proceed against such manufacturers 
under the law.
There shall be no audit of manufacturing units enrolled under these 
rules. Declaration made under these rules shall not be used for 
Income Tax, and there shall be no visit from the ST department 
staff. The liability of sales tax for newly enrolled manufacturers 
shall be ascertained on the basis of tax rates as per the relevant 
notifications issued for the year 1997-98 at indexed rates and 
additional tax as agreed.
The implementation methods are as under: The Anjuman and the FAST 
shall provide a list of 9011 units claimed by the Anjuman to have 
been operational during the financial year 1997-98 and shall also 
provide fresh list of about 9000 new units who are not paying ST in 
any form. Fresh joint surveys shall be conducted by the staff of 
the collectorate and the nominated representatives of the Anjuman 
or FAST to unearth the un-registered units for enrolment under 
these rules.
The joint survey teams shall be responsible for timely payment.

Pakistan to achieve only 3% GDP growth
WASHINGTON, April 8: Pakistan's growth rate in 1998-99 is expected 
to reach barely three per cent instead of the targeted six per 
cent, the World Bank said in a global report released here on 
But, it said, Pakistan is getting back on track after narrowly 
averting default on its nearly 30 billion dollar external debt.
The report, Global Development Finance, 1999, said Pakistan exports 
may drop by 12 per cent and against the budget deficit target of 
4.3 per cent, "the fiscal situation remains fragile."
It said foreign direct investment (FDI) increased slightly in other 
South Asian countries but fell by $100 million in Pakistan, 
totalling just under 500 million dollars.
Compared to Pakistan, the Indian economy was projected by the 
report to touch a GDP growth in 1999-2000 of 4.8 per cent, based on 
a rebound in fixed capital formation and an acceleration in 
industrial production.
It recalled that GDP in Pakistan rose by 5.4 per cent and inflation 
decelerated to less than eight per cent in 1997-98. "Increased 
political uncertainty, falling prices of cotton and lower textiles 
sales resulted in sluggish export growth."

Govt to offload 30pc of its shares in oil & gas sector
Bureau Report

ISLAMABAD, April 9: The government has decided to disinvest 30 per 
cent shares of the oil and gas sector before the end of this year.
"We have decided to offload 20 to 30 per cent shares of the 
petroleum ministry and Pakistan Petroleum Limited (PPL) in 
different oil and gas fields", said Privatization Commission 
Chairman Khawaja Muhammad Asif.
Talking to reporters here on Friday he said that the ministry and 
the PPL were having joint ventures with many local and foreign 
companies. "And as a first step the prime minister has given his 
tentative approval to start the privatization of oil and gas sector 
by selling the government shares in private companies", he added.
He said the prime minister had constituted a special committee to 
finalize modalities for the privatization of the oil and gas 
sector. The committee has formulated its recommendations to be 
discussed on Saturday by the privatization board, headed by the 
prime minister", Asif said.
He agreed with a reporter that the whole (oil and gas) sector could 
offer $14 to $15 billion after its privatization. "Our country 
could get rid of its huge foreign debt once this potential sector 
is privatized".
Asked how would the PC disinvest around 30 per cent shares of oil 
and gas sector within this year keeping in view the slow pace of 
the privatization, he said the most important thing was that this 
sector did not have any problem of tariff. There was no proposal to 
increase the prices of oil and gas therefore, its privatization 
would not be a difficult job, he added.
"We are finalizing a new strategy about the selling of the oil and 
gas sector so that the consumers should not have any problem", he 
said when asked whether the issue could further burden the 
consumers with an increased tariffs.
He said the details of partially privatizing the oil and gas sector 
would be made public through a press briefing on Saturday.
Mr Asif said that the government had decided to privatize PTCL, 
KESC, Habib Bank, United Bank, PIA's ground handling and courier 
services and flight kitchen before the end of 1999.
He said 25 per cent shares of the Muslim Commercial Bank and the 
remaining shares of the Allied Bank would also be offloaded within 
this year.

Conditional raise in Wapda tariff notified
Faraz Hashmi

ISLAMABAD, April 8: WAPDA's second revised petition seeking an 
average increase of 9.43 per cent has been notified by National 
Electric Power Regulatory Authority (NEPRA), on the condition that 
the petitioner would have to justify the increase in the public 
hearing commencing from April 17.
In case WAPDA failed to justify the increase then it would have to 
refund to the consumers the amount charged under the new tariffs, 
which had already been enforced from April 1, 1999, NEPRA Chairman 
Javed Akhter told a press conference on Thursday.
Javed giving a briefing on functioning of NEPRA justified the 
notification of second-revised petition of WAPDA prior to the 
public hearing by saying that it was closer to the earlier 
There was not much change in the second revised petition therefore 
NEPRA approved it but imposed a condition of refund in case of its 
rejection, the chairman said.
He said that NEPRA tariffs rules which were approved by the 
parliament had a provision for issuing a conditional notification.
In the second-revised petition, WAPDA had stated that the downward 
revision of the tariffs would not be in conformity with its 
covenants with the international donors - IMF and World Bank.
However, the thrust of the revised and second-revised petition was 
on the industrial consumers who had been switching over to self-
In the second-revised petition, WAPDA had projected to increase 
17.5 per cent consumption in industrial sector by making the 
tariffs more attractive.
A chart circulated at the briefing, showing comparative increase in 
the tariffs indicated that the average tariffs has been revised 
from Rs 3.18 per KWH to Rs 3.48 per KWH.
WAPDA had earlier announced to decrease the tariffs withdrawing its 
petition of an increase of 11 per cent on a presumption that the 
government would allow rescheduling of its loans to cover a deficit 
of Rs 15.377 billion.
The government, however, turned the WAPDA's request for the 
rescheduling. "During the hearing the petitioner had stated that 
the cash deficit of Rs 10.288 billion would be met through 
rescheduling of its liabilities which included the debts owed to 
the government," NEPRA notification said.
In the second revised petition, WAPDA stated that "contrary to its 
expectations, its cash deficit is now being met partly through the 
rescheduling of its liabilities, leaving a deficit of Rs 5.22 
billion for the test year 1999, which it would recover through 
further increase over and about the tariff revised petition.
All these issues including the raise sought by WAPDA for generating 
an additional Rs 5.22 billion would be examined at the hearing, 
Javed Akhter said.
WAPDA would also have to satisfy NEPRA that it could meet its 
entire cash deficit of Rs 10.28 billion under the revised petition 
through non-tariff measures.

Jewellers with turnover below Rs4m exempted

ISLAMABAD, April 8: The Central Board of Revenue has announced that 
jewellers and gold retailers with annual turnover below Rs 4 
million will not have to pay Trade Enrolment Certificate fee under 
the scheme announced for retailers on Wednesday.
Through Circular No 1, 1999, issued here on Thursday, the CBR has 
also announced mode and modalities for collection of enrolment fee. 
For jewellers and gold retailers, the circular says: Jewellers and 
gold retailers shall not be eligible for categorisation under the 
These two kind of TEF-paying retailers with turnover of any amount 
not exceeding Rs 4 million shall not be classified as payees.
The mode and modalities for retailers paying TEC fee are as 
follows: The return form shall be printed and issued in 
quadruplicates, by the Anjumn-Tajiran. Photocopies of the forms can 
also be used by retailers for this purpose.
This scheme shall not be applicable in case of persons making 
taxable supplies whose annual turnover exceeds Rs 5 million. 
The forms shall be supplied/distributed by the regional committees 
as agreed under the TEC formula. The City Committee shall keep 
market-wise record of issuance of the forms and Market 
Committees/banks shall keep the record of issuance of forms to 
individual retailers.
The form, duly filled-in and duly verified for categorisation 
purposes shall be deposited with the respective market committee 
for endorsement after determination of the category. After the 
endorsement of category, the retailer shall make payment of the 
enrolment fee as per his category in the authorized branch of 
National Bank of Pakistan.
The retailer shall deposit the duplicate copy with the respective 
market committee and shall display the original at his shop/place 
of business as TEC for the year 1998-99.
The receipt of enrolment fee paid by the retailers shall be tallied 
by the City Committee with the respective collectorates on weekly 
basis. The fee shall be paid in the designated branches of NBP on 
or before April 30, 1999.
A retailer, who fails to make payment of fee within the stipulated 
time, shall be liable to imposition of penalty equal to 11 times of 
In case of default of the due payment, the City Committee shall 
approach the district administration for recovery of the payable 
amount including the amount of penalty as the arrears of Land 
Appeal against the decision of Market Committee regarding 
determination of the category shall be heard by City Commi-ttee 
while the second appeal shall be heard by Regional Committee.
A federal committee comprising Mian Abdul Manan, MNA, Haji Maqsood 
Butt, MPA, the chairman and president AT, respectively, two 
representatives of FPCCI, chief ST, secretary RT CBR, to supervise 
the whole exercise. 
All the retailers falling in the respective categories shall be 
required to fulfil their obligations by April 30, 1999, failing 
which stringent penal action will be initiated immediately after 
that date.

Only 41% of ADP funds utilized in 9 months
Shaukat Ali

LAHORE, April 5: The Punjab government has warned to take strict 
action against heads of various departments which have not been 
showing satisfactory results in the utilization of the Annual 
Development Programme funds for the present fiscal. 
The ADP utilization has been awfully low at around 41 per cent by 
the close of the third quarter of the financial year - almost 20 
per cent less than what the government had expected at the start of 
the year 1998-99 in June last year. 
Informed sources told Dawn here on Monday that the government had 
threatened to transfer head of departments whom development funds 
remain un-utilized by June this year. 
The government is also considering a proposal to check promotion of 
officials who show inefficiency in spending the available money for 
The province has already cut overall size of its ADP for the 
present fiscal by around Rs 2 billion in the wake of low revenues 
collection at the federal level during the ongoing financial year. 
"It will be a matter of great discredit if the remaining about Rs 
15 billion are not utilized by June this year in the province which 
pressingly needs money for its development sector. 
The under utilization will also weaken the province's claim on 
increased size of development funds for the next fiscal", sources 
quoted Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif as telling a high level 
meeting held here recently. 
The social sector departments like health and education have hardly 
utilized around 40 per cent of their ADP so far. The health 
department, which was supposed to spend about Rs 1.45 billion this 
financial year was barely near to the mark of Rs 690 million in 
spending on its various ongoing and new schemes including the ones 
belonging to the Social Action Programme. 
The education department was able to utilize about Rs 1.24 billion 
out of a total outlay of around Rs 2.57 billion by the end of third 
quarter of the fiscal 1998-99. But, according to sources, worst 
were the departments of agriculture and irrigation where the ADP 
utilization was still less than 35 per cent.
The farm-to-market roads' scheme for which the government had 
provided Rs 1 billion is far from completion as the department 
could spend just about Rs 345 million in the first three quarters 
of the year.
The fate of rural development programme for which the government 
had promised to make available Rs 2 billion is not any different. 
Sources said funds utilization in this area was dreadfully low at 
30 per cent of the amount earmarked for this purpose in June last 
"The Punjab chief minister has asked for making a complete report 
on ADP utilization in the three quarters of fiscal 1998-99. It 
appears as an action against officials showing lethargy in 
development funds' utilization may be taken before the end of the 
financial year", sources quoted officials of the chief minister 
secretariat as saying.

Premiums on forward sale of $ fall sharply
Mohiuddin Aazim

KARACHI, April 6: Premiums on forward sale of dollars fell to 
record low of 1.60 per cent for three months and 0.40 per cent for 
six months in inter-bank market on Tuesday.
Senior bankers said forward booking of dollars by importers had 
been sluggish for the last few weeks resulting in a consistent fall 
of forward premiums.
"Forward counters now present a deserted look," said treasury 
manager of a state-run bank adding that most importers had rather 
grown optimistic about future strength of the rupee.
He said the greenback was traded in inter-bank market at Rs 50.35-
5.65 on Tuesday on ready counters adding that three-month and six-
month forward prices were quoted at Rs 51.35 and Rs 51.65 
Does this mean importers see no devaluation around the corner? 
"That is what it seems to be," said a polypropylene importer and 
chairman of Pakistan Polypropylene Woven Sack Manufacturers 
Association Sardar Mohammad Ashraf. "People apparently believe that 
the rupee may remain stable at least up to June. That is why 
forward demand for dollars is falling."
Finance Minister Ishaq Dar has said on several occasions that the 
government would not devalue the rupee during this fiscal year. "It 
seems importers believe him," said a plastic importer.
"There is another reason for the importers staying away from 
booking foreign exchange...and that relates to their liquidity 
problems," said another importer adding that a slump in markets had 
hit cash-flow at import houses.
But bankers as well as importers believe that the recent cut in 
import tariffs would lead to a growth in imports and ongoing cuts 
in lending rates may encourage industries to consume larger 
imports. "But this is a long process," said a bank treasurer.
Some bankers say the ministry of finance and the State Bank may 
take certain measures to force greenbacks further down in the 
inter-bank market before going for unification of exchange rates.
Leading importers who share this view cite it as a big reason for 
the fall in forward demand for dollars. They believe that the 
government has to push the dollar further down before withdrawing 
foreign exchange rate subsidy on import of wheat and petroleum 
products. Senior bankers say the subsidy might go any time before 
June 1999.
Whereas importers feel much comfortable now after substantial fall 
in both ready and forward rates of greenbacks it continues to pinch 
the exporters whose export earnings in terms of rupees are falling.
But something else is going to compensate them for this-that is a 
gradual fall in bank lending rates. 
They say overnight and term repo rates have started falling adding 
that call rates now range somewhere between 13-14 per cent and repo 
rates for one, two and three months at 9.90-10.10 per cent, 9.25-
9.65 per cent and 9.20-9.50 per cent respectively.

Share index loses 13 points on heavy selling

KARACHI, April 9: Stocks on Friday finished with an extended fall 
as fresh heavy selling in most of the pivotals by both local and 
foreign investors kept consolidation forces miles away for the 
second session in a row. The KSE 100-share index was off 13.15 
There was no apparent pressing bearish reason behind the current 
sell-off barring fresh unloading by a leading foreign fund in 
selected MNCs and its negative impact on the other pivotals in the 
form of sympathetic profit-taking.
"The market has fallen beyond its near-term mandate and corrective 
forces must be at work when the trading resume next week", hoped an 
He said the news from the economic front, notably the export and 
revenue front might not be that encouraging but they are "too bad 
Some others said the current strength of the rupee despite news of 
fall in exports and the downward revision of the export target to 
$8.2 billion reflects that the economic outlook was not that bleak.
The KSE 100-share index suffered a fresh decline of 13.15 points at 
1,021.84 as compared to 1,034.99 a day earlier, reflecting the 
weakness of leading base shares.
The market capitalization also fell to Rs283.247 billion from 
Rs286.262 billion a day earlier owing to heavy selling in mega 
issues such as PTCL and Hub-Power.
It was largely the weakness of the Hub-Power and PTCL, which took 
the entire market along with it in the minus column contrary to 
predictions of a rebound on technical grounds, analysts said.
Apart from weekend considerations, the other negative factor the 
absence of foreign investors most of them indulged in fresh selling 
rather than covering positions at the lower levels, they added.
"The conflicting reports about the settlement of the IPP issue 
continue to keep the market unsettled and until it is settled 
foreign investors might stay away", said a leading floor broker.
He said some of the local bank and institutional traders are try to 
restore consistency to the trading pattern but heavy selling by 
some of the foreign funds in pivotals did not allow any positive 
change in the market psychology.
Trading volume fell to 77 million shares from the previous 105 
million shares as losers maintained a strong lead over the gainers 
at 28 to 72, with 48 shares holding on to the last levels.
The most active list was topped by Hub-Power off 25 paisa at 
Rs16.05 on 32 million shares followed by PTCL lower 45 paisa at 
Rs17.15 on 21 million shares, Fauji Fertiliser lower 35 paisa at 
Rs52.85 on 7 million shares; ICI Pakistan up 10 paisa at Rs9.45 on 
4 million shares and Dewan Salman off 30 paisa at Rs23.65 on 3 
million shares.
The other actively traded shares were led by Engro Chemical off 
Rs1.90 on 2.113 million shares; followed by MCB easy by 75 paisa on 
1.398 million shares; FFC-Jordan Fertiliser lower 30 paisa on 0.904 
million shares; Telecard easy 25 paisa on 0.987 million shares; 
KESC down 25 paisa on 0.847 million shares and Dhan Fibre lower 20 
paisa on 0.632 million shares.
Defaulting companies: Shares of five companies came in for active 
bouts of buying and selling but finally ended mixed. The largest 
turnover of 5,500 shares was recorded in Allied Motors followed by 
Suzuki Motors, which ended unchanged on 3,000 shares.
The biggest decline of Rs1.50 was noted in Norrie Textiles, which 
fell by Rs1.50 on 500 shares, while others were traded fractionally 
lower to unchanged.

Back to the top
Wise counsel
Ardeshir Cowasjee

IT WAS in 1956, forty-three years ago, that I first met Henry 
Brandon, barrister, who had flown out from London to Karachi to 
represent us at a marine enquiry. Last week, on March 24, he died 
as Lord Brandon of Oakbrook, a great loss of a true friend.

Pakistan, in 1956, was endeavouring to become a maritime nation. 
Though we have a coastline extending over almost 1,000 kilometers 
and a land mass which has traditionally bred sea-going men in 
abundance, shipping was (and still is) largely neglected. In those 
days, shipping affairs were irreverently controlled by the ministry 
of commerce, by men who had no love for the sea, for ships or for 
the men who sail in them. The commerce secretary was the inflexible 
Aziz Ahmed.
Our junior counsel, Dorab Patel, who had recently returned from 
England having done his Bar, came to us just before the enquiry was 
to begin and announced in his inimitable relaxed drawl, "Aziz is 
stupid. He has appointed the Public Prosecutor to represent the 
Government at the enquiry, a man totally unfamiliar with shipping 
law, who is bound to conduct the enquiry as he conducts a 
prosecution. Strange people we deal with, most strange. It would be 
wise to send for a lawyer who practises at the Admiralty Bar in 
London." And so we found Henry Brandon.
He was here for three weeks, during which we practically lived 
together. We became fast friends, and I a staunch admirer of his 
outstanding legal and academic abilities. Henry had come to a 
strange country, to be confronted by strange hostile men with no 
idea of what was involved in a marine enquiry. Every ten minutes, 
Henry had to remind the enquiry panel that it was an 'enquiry' they 
were conducting, not a prosecution. The amazing thing is that the 
minute he arose, he was in complete command. He took to the strange 
situation as a duck to water. He did his best to inform the panel 
as to how marine enquiries are handled and after much effort 
succeeded to a large extent.
The ineptitude of the government side was illustrated by the 
performance of the man they had carefully kept under wraps, to be 
sprung at the right moment as their star witness. They proudly 
produced a certain Captain Simpson, a man who had written a letter 
to us demanding a payment of Rs.50,000 and the guarantee of a 
continued monthly payment of that amount. If we did not agree, he 
threatened to appear as a hostile witness, and he did.
Henry asked him whether he had indeed written such a letter. "Yes," 
he admitted boastfully. "Are you the same man who sailed in one of 
the Cowasjee ships, swallowed half a bottle of phenobarbitone, and 
for whom, to save your life, the ship had to be diverted to 
Vizagapatam so that you could be hospitalized?" "Wrong," shouted 
Simpson, announcing triumphantly, "I swallowed a full bottle." We 
kept in touch, not only as friends but professionally, as Henry 
thereafter handled many of our arbitration and salvage cases in 
Henry Vivian Brandon, born in 1920 to Captain V. R. Brandon of the 
Royal Navy, was a scholar of Winchester and of King's College, 
Cambridge. He once told me how, when a boy leaves Winchester 
(founded in 1382 by Bishop William of Wykeham), he is instructed : 
"You are going out into the big cruel world, try and change it;" 
whereas a boy leaving Eton College (founded in 1440 by Henry VI of 
England) is advised : "You are going out into the big cruel world, 

live in it." Two rival philosophies. Eton has produced many British 
prime ministers, Winchester so far none - one Wykehamist who nearly 
made it was Hugh Gaitskell. Henry's youngest son, William, also a 
scholar at Winchester, has his father's sense of humour - from a 
letter written to me in 1997 : "Following your admonition to me (in 
1992, I think) to get a proper job, I joined the Foreign Office in 
1993. So I clearly disobeyed your orders . . . !"
Henry read classics at Cambridge, but was interrupted by World War 
II and commissioned in the Royal Artillery. Posted first to 
Madagascar, he was awarded an MC for directing his regiment's fire 
by radio from a motorcycle he rode deep behind Vichy French lines. 
He later served in India and Burma, ending the war as a major. He 
returned to Cambridge, switched to law, graduated with a first in 
1946, and was called to the Bar by the Inner Temple. His practice 
in the main lay on the physical side of shipping - marine 
casualties such as collisions, wreck enquiries and salvage 
disputes, Lloyds salvage arbitrations being a sizable bread earner.
He took Silk in 1961, was knighted in 1966 and at the unprecedented 
early age of 46 (becoming the second youngest high court judge) was 
assigned to the Probate, Divorce and Admiralty Divisions. In 1978 
he was sworn in to the Privy Council and promoted to the Court of 
Appeal, and in 1981 to the House of Lords, taking the title Lord 
Brandon of Oakbrook. He was known as one of the most industrious 
and respected of the nine members of the Judicial Committee, again 
and again giving the leading judgment in every field of law.
We saw a lot of each other when he was a high court judge, as 
during those years I spent much time in London. Henry used to take 
me to tea at a quaint little tea house, opposite the Law Courts, 
where he introduced me to Lapsang Souchong and to a whole range of 
exotic teas which I had never sampled. He could discourse at ease 
and with humour on any subject - brewing tea, an astronaut's 
agility on the moon, Latin poets, Greek playwrights and the 
idiosyncrasies, often sanctimonious, of the British. And he had 
tales to tell of some of the stranger divorce cases that came his 
way. A man may be a mouse in the witness box and a lion outside, he 
commented. He held that human beings are "frail things" who tend to 
act at odds with their scruples.
Only occasionally did he hit the headlines, as he did in 1987, when 
with two of his brother law lords he voted in favour of continuing 
the British government's controversial ban on newspapers printing 
extracts from 'Spycatcher,' the book written by former MI5 officer 
Peter Wright. At the same time, expressing his support for the 
principle of a free press, he accused the attorney general of 
trying "to impose the kind of censorship the Soviet government 
imposes." The damage already done to the British security service 
could not be undone, he contended, but perhaps the courts could 
still take useful steps to reduce the possibility of similar damage 
being done again in the future. This decision brought the press to 

boiling point. The 'Daily Mirror' printed upside-down pictures of 
the three law lords who had voted to continue the ban, with the 
caption "You fools."
Needless to say, the law lords ignored it all. They held, as had 
Lord Salmon (1980 3 WLR 109 at 119) : "I am and have always been 
satisfied that no judge would be influenced in his judgment by what 
may be said by the media. If he were, he would not be fit to be a 
judge." This is more or less what our Supreme Court Justice, Nasir 
Aslam Zahid, held during the enquiry into the November 28, 1997, 
storming of his court when the attorney general objected to 
something that had been printed in this newspaper. "The days are 
gone," said Justice Zahid on April 2, 1998, "when judges are not 
supposed to read the papers. We all have biases and views, but the 
quality of a judge is that in court he must be without bias or 
In England, the law lords sit until they are 75 years of age. In 
1980 Henry had an operation on his spine which did little to 
relieve a neurological condition from which he had long suffered 
and borne with great courage. Feeling that he could no longer do 
justice on the Bench, he retired at 71.
He was much admired as a judge, and for the quality of his 
judgments, but was never a popular judge; he seemed to go out of 
his way to avoid courting popularity. He had a reputation for 
'never being wrong' and was seldom reversed on appeal. He was the 
first judge in 60 years to act as Wreck Commissioner for his 
government. A loyal friend, a great intellect with a great sense of 
humour, it was my good fortune to have known him. Even after he sat 
on the Bench, he would give his advice when sought. He believed 
that no law prevents a man from giving wise counsel at any time in 
any place.

Down the Khyber
Irfan Husain

THE year 2001 has been designated the "Visit Pakistan Year." For 
those expecting a flood of tourists two years from now, my advice 
is: "Don't hold your breath."
My column did not appear in this space last week because I was away 
in Sri Lanka for a brief holiday over Eid. Despite the ongoing 
civil war, the country attracts hundreds of thousands of foreigners 
to its shores every year. Its splendid beaches and lush green 
mountains are dotted with hotels and resorts to suit every taste 
and every pocket. By contrast, our meagre facilities pale into 
According to the World Tourism Organization (WTO), the number of 
tourists arriving in the rest of South Asia increased by over 4.8 
per cent last year; however, the number dropped by a similar 
percentage in Pakistan. We are at the bottom of the regional 
tourism table, languishing far behind even Nepal and the Maldives. 
So when Mushahid Hussain, the tourism minister, says this 
government wants to promote tourism, I have no reason not to 
believe him, but it will take more than pious wishes to attract 
foreigners to our inhospitable country.
Don't get me wrong: we go overboard in extending hospitality to our 
guests. But paradoxically, as a people we are gratuitously rude to 
total strangers. Many foreigners have complained to me about people 
staring at them constantly and accosting them aggressively from 
Khyber to Karachi. Women especially are hassled at every turn. By 
contrast, outsiders are generally left strictly to themselves in 
all the other South Asian countries. Obviously, nobody who has 
spent a lot of money wants to be surrounded by pushy crowds while 
he or she is on vacation.
The average tourist wants value for money, and this includes 
comfortable hotels, familiar food, well-organized tours and a 
generally good time. At home, he works hard and saves so that he 
and his family can have a holiday abroad that they will remember. 
Indeed, the most effective publicity for a country in terms of 
tourism is generated by satisfied tourists who talk to their 
neighbours, relatives and colleagues about the splendid time they 
have just had in country X, Y or Z. Unfortunately, Pakistan does 
not make it into this category of vacation destinations.
Let us be honest: if we lived abroad, how many of us would buy a 
ticket to visit Pakistan for a holiday when we had the whole world 
to choose from? The fact is that we have acquired a very unsavoury 
reputation worldwide. Several foreigners have been gunned down and 
kidnapped; the country is awash with arms, and scarcely a day 
passes without some incident of ethnic or sectarian violence. The 
country's name has come to be associated with drug smuggling, 
illegal immigrants and a fanatical version of religion.
With such an image, it should surprise nobody that the number of 
tourists to Pakistan is declining. Indeed, most people who do come 
here are foreigners flying in on short business trips, or 
expatriate Pakistanis who have now acquired foreign nationality and 
come here to visit their relatives. Genuine tourism is limited to 
those hardy souls who have a craving for the high peaks of the 
Northern Areas, or history buffs who wish to visit Mughal and 
Gandhara sites.
Not surprisingly, not too many people fall into either category, 
and therefore Pakistan's share of the tourist traffic to the area 
remains minuscule. If we want to tap into the mass tourist trade, 
we will have to invest heavily in the infrastructure, apart from 
changing attitudes. There is little sign of either happening. Many 
foreign visitors ask me for advice on how to spend their evenings 
in any of our major cities. I'm afraid I have few suggestions to 
Our cinemas are a shambles, and the movies they show are better 
avoided. Public concerts are few and far between. There are very 
few good restaurants, and foreigners cannot get a drink. The fact 
is that alcohol is a part of everyday life in the West, and 
recognizing this, most Muslim countries permit hotels and 
restaurants to serve alcoholic beverages to foreigners without 
lengthy bureaucratic procedures. But prohibition in Pakistan, 
especially in Punjab and the NWFP, is very rigid. So why should 
anybody spend money to face all these deprivations?
Another problem foreigners often face is the difficulty in getting 
visas for Pakistan. Most large travel agencies in the West obtain 
visas for customers for a small service charge. Recently, our High 
Commission in the UK has made it mandatory for intending visitors 
to come to the visa section in person. The procedure here is so 
time-consuming and frustrating that you have to really want to 
visit Pakistan to put up with it.
First, you get into one queue to hand in your form; then you stand 
in another line to deposit the visa fee in cash - something 
considered abnormal in a society where even cinema theatres accept 
cheques for tickets. Finally you take the receipt, the form and 
your passport to a third official who gives you a token and asks 
you to return a few hours later when you wait around sitting on 
dirty sofas for your name to be called. None of our senior 
diplomats take the time and trouble to see what is happening in the 
visa section, leaving it to their minions to spoil Pakistan's image 
still further.
But more than the image, it is the reality that deters visitors. 
Our Tourism Minister has been quoted recently as stating: "It is 
unfortunate that Pakistan suffers from image problem (sic) due to 
misconceptions..." Our treatment of minorities and women is not a 
misconception, and nor is the sectarian divide in Karachi.
Similarly, our holier-than-thou attitude that grates on so many 
nerves, local and foreign, is not a figment of the imagination. The 
drugs and arms culture that took root during the Zia era is an 
unfortunate but all-too-real fact of life.
At the conclusion of a "Khyber Steam Safari", Mushahid Hussain 
apparently got a bit carried away and is quoted as saying that "the 
historic Khyber Pass will serve as a gateway of tourism in 
Pakistan." I can only presume that he was alluding to the rapid 
Talibanization of Pakistan that will attract our hirsute neighbours 
to visit us. I cannot imagine too many other tourists coming down 
the Khyber to visit Pakistan.

Pakistan thrash India, lift trophy
Bureau Report
BANGALORE, April 4: Pakistan inflicted a crushing 123-run defeat 
over India in the tri-nation one-day series on Sunday.
Opting to bat first after winning the toss, Pakistan scored 291 for 
eight in 50 overs. Main scorers for Pakistan were Inzamam-ul-Haq 91 
and Shahid Afridi 65.
India were all out for 168 in 42.1 overs.
Azhar Mahmood with 5/38 was declared man of the match. 

Invincible Pakistan make India an easy prey

SHARJAH, United Arab Emirates, April 8: Wasim Akram's Pakistan 
showed no mercy on illness-stricken India as they cantered to a 
fluent 116-run victory in the Champions Cup here on Thursday.

Inzamam-ul Haq smashed a glorious 107 as the Pakistanis piled up 
279-8 in their 50 overs after taking first strike in the day-night 
The Indians, who lost five players overnight to viruses, managed 
only a pathetic 163-6 in reply to suffer their eighth successive 
defeat against the rampant Pakistanis.
Seamer Azhar Mahmood picked up 2-20 from 10 overs to give Pakistan 
their second win in the three-nation tournament after the 90-run 
romp against England in Wednesday's opening match.
The hopelessly one-sided encounter was marked by just one boundary 
from the first five Indian batsmen, as against a flurry of fours 
and sixes from the Pakistanis.
The Indians, already missing their injured superstar Sachin 
Tendulkar, woke up in the morning to find Vinod Kambli, Amay 
Khurasia, Ajit Agarkar, Nayan Mongia and Nikhil Chopra affected by 
viral fever.
With just 10 men fit to play, a visibly distraught Mongia was taken 
from his sick bed and persuaded to don the wicket-keeping gloves.
Team coach Anshuman Gaekwad said he has asked for replacements to 
be flown in for Kambli, Agarkar and Mongia, preferably before the 
next match against England on Friday. -AFP

Pakistan thrash England by 90 runs in Champions Cup

SHARJAH, United Arab Emirates, April 7: Hapless England became the 
latest victim of Pakistan's awesome firepower as they crashed to a 
90-run defeat in the Champions Cup opener here on Wednesday.
Wasim Akram's invincibles, fresh from a resounding tour of India, 
rode on a belligerent 137 off 130 balls by Ijaz Ahmed to pile up a 
record 323-5 after electing to take first strike.
England, who never had so many runs scored against them in a one-
dayer, were shot out for 233 after the top order caved in against 
the lightning speed of Shoaib Akhtar in the day-night match.
Akhtar struck in his first, third and fifth overs to reduce England 
to 53-3, before Graeme Hick and new sensation Andrew Flintoff 
hammered 94 off 90 balls for the fifth wicket.
The giant Flintoff, who took a century off his team-mates during a 
practice match in Pakistan last week, hit four towering sixes and 
two fours in his run-a-ball 50.
Hick made 65 as the pair took the score from 91-4 to 185 when off-
spinner Saqlain Mushtaq ended England's resistence by removing both 
batsmen in the space of four deliveries.
Pakistan take on India on Thursday looking for their eighth 
straight limited-overs win against the arch-rivals.
Ijaz hit 12 boundaries and a six in his 10th one day-century as the 
Pakistanis flayed the English attack in good batting conditions at 
the Sharjah cricket stadium.

Ijaz put on 86 for the second wicket with Shahid Afridi (41) and 
then 145 off just 132 balls for the third with Inzamam-ul Haq, who 
made 59.
Moin Khan smashed sixes off the last two balls of the innings, 
bowled by Flintoff, to post the highest one-day total by any side 
against England.
Pakistan, who scored 98 runs in the last 10 overs, crossed the West 
Indian record score of 313-6 against England at St. Vincent in 

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